Born: September 4, 1942
Birthplace: Ft. Bragg, North Carolina
Height: 6 ft 1 in
College: University of North Carolina
Turned Pro: 1961
Raymond Floyd wasn’t blessed with a beautiful golf swing or athletic physique. Instead of those traits – which are now a dime a dozen on the PGA Tour – Floyd was blessed with an incredible competitive temperament that saw him win the Masters, the U.S. Open and 2 PGA Championships.
Floyd’s father, L.B., served as the head pro at Ft. Bragg’s enlisted men’s golf course. Later on, his father owned and operated a driving range and golf course, affording young Raymond an opportunity to play and practice for hours on end.
Floyd would attend college at UNC in Chapel Hill, North Carolina but only stay for one semester before dropping out of school and turning pro. Two short years later, Floyd would capture his first of 22 PGA titles at the 1962 St. Petersburg Open Invitational.
Floyd would win his first Major in 1969, edging Gary Player by a single stroke to win the PGA Championship.
In 1976, Floyd led wire to wire at the Masters Championship. He blew away the field that week and shot the 72-hole scoring record in beating runner-up Ben Crenshaw by 8 shots.
Throughout his career, Floyd would become a dangerous player when he secured the lead in a tournament. Floyd’s peers and sportswriters would marvel about “the stare” that Floyd would employ as he became hyper-focused when playing particularly well.
Floyd would lead wire to wire again at the 1982 PGA Championship. He defeated Lanny Wadkins by 3 shots to secure his third Major championship.
In 1986, at 43 years of age, Floyd would fire a final round 66 at Shinnecock Hills and capture the U.S. Open by 2 shots over Chip Beck and Lanny Wadkins.
Floyd would go on to threaten to win a second Masters title twice more in his late 40’s. He lost in 1990 at the age of 47 to Nick Faldo on the second hole of sudden death and two years later, he finished runner up to Fred Couple.
Floyd would go on to a stellar career on the Champions Tour, winning 14 titles, including 4 Senior Major Championships.